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FDA Puts Warning Labels, Tighter Rules On Tanning Beds

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced tanning beds will now be required to sport a label warning people under 18 not to use them.
Posted at 9:58 PM, May 29, 2014

Tanning salons all over the U.S. just got burned. The Food and Drug Administration will now require tanning beds to sport a black box warning, the organization's strongest cautionary label.

"Tanning beds must now carry a visible warning cautioning anyone under 18 not to use them." (Via ABC)

That's because the FDA says indoor tanning is more dangerous for people under 18.

The director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health says, “Repeated UV exposure from sunlamp products poses a risk of skin cancer for all users—but the highest risk for skin cancer is in young persons under the age of 18 and people with a family history of skin cancer.”​

That's not all, though. The FDA also reclassified tanning beds from low risk to moderate risk devices.

NBC adds tanning bed and sunlamp manufacturers will now be required to include additional warnings about cancer risks in pamphlets, catalogs and websites that promote indoor tanning.

ABC reports the proponents of indoor tanning say the FDA is overreacting.

"The tanning industry calls the new rules excessive and says their products, used properly, are safe." (Via ABC)

But the American Academy of Dermatology says that's just not true.

"Studies have found a 59 percent increase in the risk of melanoma in those who have been exposed to UV radiation from indoor tanning, and the risk increases with each use." (Via American Academy of Dermatology)

Even though these warnings suggest people under the age of 18 should not use tanning beds, the National Conference of State Legislatures says only eight states actually bar minors from indoor tanning.